Joe Conason

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Joe Conason (born January 25, 1954)[citation needed] is an American journalist, author and liberal political commentator. He writes a column for and has written a number of books, including Big Lies (2003), which addresses what he says are myths spread about liberals by conservatives. He currently is editor-in-chief at The National Memo, a leftwing political newsletter and website.

Life and career[edit]

Conason was born in New York City. His father, Emanuel Voltaire Conason (1912–2008), co-owned Ellie Conason, a contemporary design and crafts store in White Plains,[1] with his wife, Eleanor (née Levinson) Conason (August 20, 1917–January 5, 2002). The family's surname was originally "Cohen".[2]

From 1978-90, he worked as a columnist and staff writer at The Village Voice. In The Free Voice of Labor, a 1980 documentary movie about the Yiddish anarchist newspaper Freie Arbeiter Stimme (Free Voice of Labor), a young Conason was interviewed. His grandfather Joseph Cohen served as the paper's editor for a number of years and Conason may have been an intern for them.

From 1990 to 1992, Conason was "editor-at-large" for Details magazine. In 1992, he became a columnist for the New York Observer, a position he still holds. In 1992, he authored an article for Spy Magazine that accused then-President George H. W. Bush of having cheated on his wife Barbara.[3]

Conason was a regular guest and a guest host on The Al Franken Show, where he had the distinction of being the only guest with two theme songs. He made an appearance every Friday as a commentator, as well as co-judging with Franken their weekly quiz show Wait, wait, don't lie to me.[citation needed]

In 2000, he co-authored the book The Hunting of the President: The 10 Year Campaign to Destroy Bill and Hillary Clinton with Gene Lyons; the book was turned into a documentary in 2004, which Conason co-produced. The Raw Deal, his book on the Bush Administration's efforts to "end Social Security as we know it", appeared in 2005. In 2007, he published It Can Happen Here: Authoritarian Peril in the Age of Bush. Conason briefly appeared in part 2. of the Adam Curtis documentary The Power Of Nightmares talking about neoconservatives' "fantasy enemy" in the Lewinsky scandal.

He appeared in the Stefan Forbes documentary, Boogie Man: The Lee Atwater Story. In the film he says, "Atwater perceived, long before anyone else in American politics did, that the biggest threat to Bush was a guy from Arkansas named Bill Clinton. The idea was to dirty up Clinton, to do enough damage to him that he would simply be too damaged to run for President. Distract and divert. Atwater started transforming politics into a series of tabloid moments in a way that was incredibly powerful for the Republicans."[citation needed]



  1. ^ "Couple's Long Career Culminates in Festival", The New York Times, December 13, 1992
  2. ^ [1][dead link]
  3. ^ "Spy". pp. 31/38. Retrieved 2016-01-17. 

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